Darius Rucker might be singing “I only wanna be with you” more often.
The 50-year-old lead singer of “Hootie And The Blowfish” told ESPN on Monday that he is now a partner in a company called MGC Sports, which represents golfers, football players and coaches.
Rucker was approached by Alan Bullington, who had recently merged his sports agency, One Degree Management, with MGC, a law firm that has offices in the Southeast.
“I said, jokingly to him, ‘You want to work with us?'” Bullington said. “And he said, ‘You aren’t serious, are you?'”
Rucker was looking to engage himself in a new challenge, with the desire of reducing his performances from 100 dates a year to about 30. A lifelong sports fan, Rucker thought the agency business was a fit.
“If I didn’t see Jay Z crushing it in the business like he is, I probably wouldn’t have done it,” Rucker said. “But I think I have a lot to offer.”
It will be harder to score football clients, as Rucker, who isn’t a licensed agent with the NFLPA, will only be able to meet with a prospective client in an office on the subject of marketing.
Rucker has always had a fondness for football and golf. He is a Miami Dolphins fan; he recently could be found inside the ropes at the Ryder Cup, and he attended Arnold Palmer’s funeral.
“The sports agent business is definitely a cutthroat business,” Rucker said. “I think I have a lot to offer, coming from my upbringing to where I got to. We’re not going to be that firm that offers $100,000 marketing guarantees as loans, but I think we’re going to get the right kids.”
Rucker said the firm is positioned to do well in football, thanks to being close to Southeast powers Clemson, South Carolina and NC State. He said they can do well signing third- and fourth-round talent that plays in the league for a decade. In golf, Rucker said the big marketing money is focused at the top.
After “Hootie and the Blowfish,” which he started at the University of South Carolina in 1986, Rucker started his solo career in R&B and moved into country music in 2008.
Said Rucker: “I’m going to be really involved. I will be one phone call away if a client needs some advice or needs me to be at their game.”
While Jay Z’s Roc Nation Sports has signed big-time clients like Dez Bryant, Robinson Cano, Kevin Durant, Ndamukong Suh and Yoenis Cespedes, among others, the road has been rougher for Lil’ Wayne, who started his sports agency, Young Money Sports. His two clients are Florida State linebacker Reggie Northrup, who hasn’t caught on with an NFL team, and Terrance Ferguson, who signed with him after turning pro and going to Australia over college.